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Press Review


“Hayastani Hanrapetutyun” writes that President Robert Kocharian is making every effort to “consolidate the society” and maintain political stability. Writing ahead of Kocharian’s inauguration ceremony, the paper says the Armenian opposition should not create “artificial” tensions in the country which now needs some “positive input.”

“Hayots Ashkhar” says Kocharian will become on Wednesday “the president of all citizens of the Republic of Armenia.” The paper says he will serve those who voted for and against him. Every Armenian must believe in this. “We think that it is time to put an end to upheavals and conflicts that are very dangerous for a small country with numerous problems like ours,” it says, warning that the opposition will not be allowed to “shake the boat of statehood endlessly after April 9.”

But as “Haykakan Zhamanak” comments from a diametrically opposite perspective, Kocharian will vow to respected his citizens’ freedom in a building surrounded by barbed wire and police.

“This will probably be the saddest oath in Kocharian’s life,” writes “Orran” which says the ceremony will leave the president with “only bitter memories.”

“For God’s sake, do not take oaths,” “Aravot” appeals to Kocharian. “You can give as many promises as you wish. You can even fail to fulfill them. But an oath is a different thing. There is some spiritual responsibility in it. Even for a militant atheist.”

In a separate editorial, “Aravot” said the Constitutional Court should invalidate the presidential election and call a new one. “But that will not happen. There is no way this chairman of the Constitutional Court can do that,” the paper says, pointing to Gagik Harutiunian’s Communist background. Experienced Communist “apparatchiks,” it says, never challenge the government. “They are always with the powerful, the oppressors and the persecutors.”

President Kocharian is not the only government official to get negative publicity from the media on Wednesday. “Aravot” carries on its front page the picture of a luxurious villa outside Yerevan which it says belongs to Deputy Prosecutor-General Aghvan Hovsepian. The paper comments tartly that Hovsepian’s modest salary would hardly suffice to build such a house.

Also attacking Hovsepian is the Dashnaktsutyun newspaper “Yerkir.” The paper reports that Hovsepian is building a posh restaurant in the heart of Yerevan and again accuses the top prosecutor of meddling in the parliamentary election campaign. “Yerkir” wonders how Hovsepian has become so rich and influential and what the country’s leadership thinks of that.

(Vache Sarkisian)
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